Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Pop Quiz: Which lake is bigger, Truman Lake or the Lake of the Ozarks?

Actually Truman Lake is bigger than the Lake of the Ozarks.  Look at any map and it's easy to see that the two lakes appear to be about the same size. It turns out that land-wise there is only a slight size difference in the surface area each lake takes up, but Truman Lake is slightly bigger.  It is the amount of impounded water that is remarkably different.

                                                  Truman Lake                               Lake of the Ozarks

Surface Area:                      55,600 acres (87 sq.mi.)                 55,000 acres (86 sq.mi.)
Max water storage              about 1.3 Trillion gallons               about 617 billion gallons
source Ameren UE ML083360080

As we can see, despite covering roughly the same square mileage on the surface, Truman Dam holds more than twice the amount of water!  This indicates that, in general, Truman Lake is twice as deep as Lake of the Ozarks.

Note: The 617 billion gallon storage rating for the Lake of the Ozarks is below the "officially" stated storage of 650 billion gallons.

Monday, February 01, 2016

January 2016 Lake Level and Discharge

The effects of December's flooding are only now truly receding.  Ameren has kept Bagnell Dam discharge at full generating capacity (above 37,500cfs) for almost the entire month in order to help take pressure off of Truman Lake which maintained minimal flow in December to help with flooding.

In fact, flood gates apparently were opened again from January 5th to January 16th.  Discharge remains nearly at full generating capacity starting February.  The 5 year moving average (in orange) shows typical lake level for this time of year and as can be seen, is nearly two feet higher. Ameren continues to try to reach drawdown levels as expected, but they will need to maintain +30,000cfs outflow to make it to the average low level by mid-Februrary.